State of The Game #93: Building MAV’s

Welcome to another State of the Game! This week, as promised, I deliver snapshot build 0.5.12_1 which includes generators and spacers.

To get the update, make sure you have the snapshot option enabled in the settings and the game should notify you of the available update (on the next launch).

So, this was a BIG update and it has a LOT of new things in it. So many things changed, I can’t even tell you about them all. How big was the update though?

        • 405 Files were changed, created, or deleted
        • 23 Models and textures were made
        • ~3000 lines of code were written
        • ~2000 Test AI MAV’s were created
        • 32 test games were played


Now lets look at what I did in all those changes:



The most noticeable change will be the inclusion of the energy system. This is controlled by the generators and the mobility platforms. Each of these parts generate energy that can be used by the other parts on the MAV. This energy bar is represented in the Garage UI on the bottom right hand side.

Also, spacer parts were added to the game. These parts are more just solid hunks of metal that allow you to fit other parts into a more desirable manner. They include small, angled pieces, to many variations of other connections and angles.

The first named part is in the game! Scott Burnett won the facebook contest and was asked to rename a part. He picked one of the flame throwers to rename and came up with a really cool name that is a variation of his name and a play on the ‘Burn’ in his last name.

As a requirement to get the AI working nicely with the new parts, the entire AI building system was redone from scratch. There is a much more robust system in place that allows them to make more intelligent choices about which parts they pick, how they place them, and making sure they meet all the build requirements. It also moved this into an offline process, meaning it does not build the AI MAV’s in real-time anymore. This is to prevent lag and frame rate issues when playing.  An interesting side effect of this is, I built into the system a way to upgrade it in the future to grow and expand from player built MAV’s. There is also a fairly easy way of propagating these builds out to other players, which in theory means the AI could also draw from the creativity of the player base to help build its MAV’s.

Other than that, I did a lot of random bug fixing and balancing tweaks. One important tweak I made was, after going over a lot of player data points, I noticed almost everyone was getting kills by blowing out the legs of other players. So I upped the health of all the leg types, to encourage shooing for the cockpit and only going for the legs as a last resort.

Next week I will be bug fixing and polishing issues with this snapshot, so please report any bugs or issues to the message board!

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